TV Appearance

If you are near the TV at 4:30 this afternoon hop over to WTAJ Altoona PA. I’ll be making an appearance on the Perry Wellington Real Estate show to talk about using aerial video to sell your home. If you don’t see the show check out the video of two great properties here:

Give them a call if you want more information on these two homes.

After the home video I hope you enjoy the shots of First Presbyterian Church and Walnut Street in Hollidaysburg, PA. The sunlight was just right for some creative aerial photography.

Have a great Memorial Day Weekend!

Section 333 Exemption

The response to my drone videos has been incredible. The Logan Town Center videos have gotten over 10,000 views! Thanks for checking them out.

Your interest, combined with the FAA approving our Section 333 Exemption, has us flying commercially now at Pennsylvania SkyOps.

We provide a broad range of high resolution aerial photography and cinematography services that include:

– Residential and Commercial Real Estate
– Building Inspection (Roofs, Chimneys, Structure)
– Construction Sites and Architecture
– Insurance Claims
– Promotions for Country Clubs / Golf Courses / Wineries
– Agriculture applications
– Private Events such as weddings, family reunions

When our drones are finished with the aerial media production, our team can perform post-production services to complete your project. We edit videos to create the look and feel you want to include sound, coloring, visual special effects and more.

Pennsylvania SkyOps is Central Pennsylvania’s only Section 333 drone operation. We also carry $2-million dollars in bodily injury and property damage insurance so your flight is worry free.

Kurt The CyberGuy Gets It Wrong

Kurt The CyberGuy got it wrong on Fox and Friends about a drone hitting a British Airways jet above Heathrow Airport in April. On his website, and on-air, he continued the unwarranted drone hysteria with this.  “Maybe that’s why a British Airways pilot is feeling relieved after landing his Airbus 320 safely at Heathrow airport following a collision with a recreational drone while on final approach.  The first known drone versus aircraft collision.”


British Transport minister Robert Goodwill told a House of Lords committee investigating the incident that the reported drone strike has not been confirmed. It was the local police force that tweeted that they had a report of a drone striking an aircraft. “And indeed the early reports of a dent in the front of the plane were not confirmed – there was no actual damage to the plane and there’s indeed some speculation that it may have even been a plastic bag or something.”

Problems With Updating Phantom Firmware

I’ve had a difficult time getting my Phantom 3 to recognize the .bin files required to do a firmware update. If you run into the situation where you power-up the aircraft, with a formatted SD card and only the .bin file in the root directory, and the Phantom goes directly to writing the DCIM file and not unpacking and installing the .bin file, I believe it is because the Phantom is very finicky about the formatting of the SD card.

I’m using a MacBook Pro with a Windows 10 partition and a Sony DuoPro card reader attached by USB.

This is the procedure I followed formatting in Mac:

  1. Formatted the microSD card in the SD card reader using Disk Utility and the MS-DOS format
  2. Downloaded the .bin file from DJI
  3. Copied the .bin file to the microSD card in the DuoPro reader
  4. Ejected the microSD card
  5. Placed the microSD card in the Phantom and powered it up

Here is the weird part. The other choice for formatting in Disk Utility is ExFat. I couldn’t get that to work. My luck with formatting in Windows 10 to a microSD in an adapter in the SD slot on the Mac was also unsuccessful using ExFat, NTFS, and the recommended FAT32.

I can’t say for use, but not using the adapter made the difference for me.

I’ve set aside the microSD card that worked and plan to use it for all future updates. I’ve left the last version of the .bin file on the drive to make sure the new .bin file is next in the release sequence. I learned the hard way that you can’t skip an update to the Phantom firmware. If you are on 1.6 and try to update to 1.8, the update will fail.

After I have the new .bin file on the drive I delete the old file and then power-up the Phantom.


Keep Your Props Turning!

Hillside Collapse

An expanding fault on a mountain near a Central Pennsylvania shopping center gave way as workers tried to stabilize the area over the weekend. Check out the before photo in a previous post.

Logan Town Center

An expanding fault on a mountain near a Central Pennsylvania shopping center has officials worried about a collapse. Inspecting and monitoring the fissure is a perfect use for a drone! No one put in danger having to walk up the hillside for a close look.  The zig zag on the right side of the photo is the fault. If there is a slide all the power lines running behind Logan Town Center will come down and threaten the backs of at least three stores.


Shooting about :20 feet above the fissure you can see how deep it is. Local TV and power company made use of our pictures. Would you test your piloting skills and go into the fissure for a really close look? I decided a blind decent wasn’t worth the risk. But a video of it emerging from the crack would have been awesome.


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